So I have had a long hard think about my use of a running GPS watch and you will know if you follow the blog, I have had some issues and frustrations with the Garmin Forerunner 210 I had.
Don’t get me wrong it’s been a great watch and a great companion but the GPS signal issue that I have had recently is simply driving me nuts.
I did speak to Garmin and they recognise that there may be an issue but they also state environment might be the problem. I am not sold on this anymore as I have used my Garmin in London, Colchester, Vancouver and Tofino and all those places are different with various environmental considerations. At each case the GPS took a good 5 – 8 minutes to lock. I’m sorry I don’t have time for that!
So I got to thinking about whether to perceiver or to stop using a running watch.
Truth is once I am back into the zone of running I like having the watch. I like having something I can glance at and something that notifies me about laps etc.
Yes the iPhone can do this but I seldom here the audio in noisy areas and to lift your arm to twist and check the screen is distracting – not to mention dangerous.
The Garmin was also a USB connected device so you had to wait until you connected to your computer to sync.
So I have done some research and got myself a new running watch. The iPhone is great but my new watch will enable me to sync to my existing accounts online, bluetooth connect with my iPhone and is much easier to use with a much clearer navigation device for the OS.
It also has a built in heart rate monitor which is a bonus especially as this one is recorded to work well.
I had a HRM with my Garmin but only put it on every once in a while which defeats the object of having it.
So what have I opted for? That’s right! An App…. No actually it’s not an Apple Watch.
I tried one on in Vancouver, had the demo and did lots of research and have decided the Apple Watch is not for me.
The heart rate monitor does not work well at speed, there is no in depth dedicated software. Third party has some crazy restrictions which means it’s a pain to use and the battery life is pants. Oh and it’s expensive.
After dismissing the Apple Watch I had another look at the Tom Tom Runner Cardio GPS Watch and am very pleased with what they have to offer.
The first version which came on the market a couple years ago had a bad rep and was a victim of a non sports company trying to break into this expanding market.
Now however things have changed and moved on very quickly.
The watch boasts a built in heart rate monitor which is sealed for accurate reading whilst running. Bluetooth to sync with my iPhone and computer. One button navigation. A clear screen… and best of all connection/startup up satellite times of 6-10 seconds!
I have read the marketing material and looked at the site but I have also read lots of reviews and watched lots of reviewer videos and all of them give it a very favourable review.
Having the monitor in the watch means never having to take time to put on an additional strap and pairing, it is always with me on every run.
I can also use it with the improved Tom Tom web site but get to extract to my existing run tracking sites (including Garmin Connect, Strava and Run Keeper to name a few!).
So I have bitten the bullet and ordered myself the white and red one which should hopefully be with me next week. Expect a full review once I have had a chance to give it a test drive (or run as the case may be).
My Garmin? Well that has already found a new home via eBay (sold in a matter of minutes) so at least someone else will appreciate it and I have some spare cash to put towards my Tom Tom 😄